“A great and indeed agonizing story of a young girl who experiences life changing events in a short period of time.”
READ THE REVIEW: http://www.amazon.com/review/RHKXL83IHV2VW
Muscat, Oman, 23 May 2012
“An amazing event featuring local talent which brought tears to one’s eyes”.
The Literati event held at Majan University College on Wednesday the 23rd May 2012, under the auspices of HH Dr Adham bin Turki Al-Said, was an event of social unity within the community focusing on local talents in the Arts featuring “Mirabella and the Pearl of Chulothe”, an English fiction novel written by Omani author Laila Al-Bellucci, published by Adducent, Florida, USA.
The evening opened with a rendition from an Omani Traditional Oud player Waleed Darwish Al-Breiky from Al-Musanna followed by a video on Laila-Al-Bellucci’s novel “Mirabella and the Pearl of Chulothe” and an inspiring speech together with a synopsis of the novel was given by the author who stressed on “the importance of focusing and elevating talent within the community and emphasised the need for community participation within the Arts”.
This theme set the stage for the arrangement of the event and recognition of other young budding talents in the Arts whom the College recognized and encouraged in their quests to attain greater recognition for the Arts within the Sultanate and also promote local talent beyond the shores of Oman.
The College’s “Arts Awards” recognized local talents in the community including: -
- Julia Al-Zadjali – honored for her book “The Traditional Women’s Dress of Oman”, potraying the exquisite beauty and heritage of the Traditional Omani woman’s adornment in an interplay of words and pictures.
- Nasra Al-Adawi – honoured for her literary works promoting humanitarian and charitable causes.
- Ali Mehdi – recognized (posthumously) for his literary achievements, which are similarly rooted in the portrayal of humanitarian charitable causes, a poet, blogger and columnist.
- Habiba Al-Tauqi – An inspiration to many, recognized (posthumously) for her literary achievements in Arabic and English.
- Al-Muqtada Aladawi – recognized for his talent at story writing.
- Safiya Al-Bahlani – An Omani artist and poet, though physically challenged, was recognized for her paintings and poetic talent.
- Waleed Darwish Al Breiky – honoured as a talented local artiste on the OUD musical Instrument.
- Ms. Malee Thombuwilla, Ms. Maha Al-Yayhae and Ms. Zaratoon Al-Balushi – students and strong achievers from the English Language faculty at the Majan University College were recognized for their talents and performance in literary events in the College.
The evening included inspirational speeches, stories, poems, music and exquisite art pieces from extraordinary individuals from all walks of life.
Worthy of mention was a poem written and recited by Safiya Al –Bahlani artist entitled “Step into my shoes” which received a standing ovation from the audience as guests were moved to tears with her thought provoking poem on coping with her physical challenges.
An excerpt read from 8 year old Al-Muqtada Al-Adawi’s short story “The Talking Cat” received a resounding applause along with acknowledgement of strong achievers from the College’s literary activities, who were commended for their talents and participation at literary co-curricular activities.
The Dean of the College, Dr. Maha Kobeil, noted in her welcome address the College’s desire to recognize and encourage young talents who aspire to achieve greater heights especially those whose work remains undiscovered. Sheikh Nasr Al-Hosni, a member of the Board of Directors, of the College made a call for support of young talent. He hoped that a balance would be struck between Academics and the Arts, stressing the need to promote and support budding talents across the region.
Guests commented on the literati evening as “an amazing event, featuring local talent which brought tears to one’s eyes”. The night ended with photo shoots of the Award nominees and distinguished guests. The evening was brilliantly delivered by broadcaster Ms. Lakshmi Kothaneth.
On 23rd May 2012 Majan University College will hold a ‘Literati Evening’ under the auspices of His Highness Dr. Adham bin Turki Al-Said featuring Mirabella and the Pearl of Chulothe by Omani author Laila Al Bellucci.
The Majan College Literati Evening will also feature an Arts Awards where local aspiring writers, artists and musicians will be recognized.
Here is a video of images, reviews and excerpts from Mirabella and the Pearl of Chulothe:
14 April 2012, Muscat
At the invitation of the US Embassy, Omani novelist Laila Al-Bellucci presented the US Ambassador to Oman, Dr. Richard J. Schmierer, with a signed copy of her new fiction book for children and young adults entitled “Mirabella and the Pearl of Chulothe” brought to the international market by US publisher Adducent, Inc., a Florida based publisher, and ArkWatch Holdings LLC, an Arizona based intellectual property company. Laila explained to H.E. the Ambassador, “the US publishers believed in my work and helped me bring my book to the market and this is a beacon for other budding Omani authors to do the same; I am grateful to Adducent for giving me this fantastic opportunity to publish my work.”
Mirabella and the Pearl of Chulothe is Laila’s debut novel which sets the stage for an adventure that unfolds over four more books set in locations throughout the world that smartly uses myths and legends from the region as part of the story. Laila briefed H.E. the US Ambassador that there is code within the book termed a ‘codilleom’ which when decoded by the readers leads them to the book’s next location. H.E. the US Ambassador asked Laila whether any of the books would be located in Oman but Laila said the codilleom needs to be unravelled to get the answer! Laila is currently writing the second book in the series.
Mirabella and the Pearl of Chulothe is available through several online booksellers such as Amazon, Barnes & Noble and W.H.Smith and soon to be stocked in Oman.
Listen as Ms. Lynne Stuart reads an extract from Mirabella and the Pearl of Chulothe.
From May Al K regarding Mirabella and The Pearl of Chulothe
23 minutes ago
I LOVE THIS BOOK BY FAR BETTR THEN HARRY POTTER! PLZ MAKE A MOVIE PLZ!
(Dennis Lowery’s speech at the book launch of Mirabella and the Pearl of Chulothe):
In 1980, as a young man serving the United States Navy, my ship made a port call to Muscat. I was only twenty years old but had already traveled to a dozen countries—several in the Middle East and the gulf region. My first day visiting Muscat I knew this was a special place above all others I’d been to.
It had all the majesty and history of famous places I had visited but had one thing I sensed the others lacked. It touched my soul where the others had not. Perhaps it was something carried on the wind or that lived in the mountains or deep in the soil and sands—I don’t know where it came from—but felt it.
A peace and calm along with a strong pulse that makes one appreciate life.
This past Monday, my first morning here at the beautiful Al Bustan Palace (a wonderful Ritz-Carlton property), while having coffee on the terrace facing the sea, I felt it again. It made me stop, hold my breath for a long minute, and then exhale. I looked at the blue sky above azure water framed by rugged mountains—and had a clear distinct moment when all I thought was how beautiful life and our world is. For a moment that still lingers—even now while speaking to you—I feel like I’m twenty years old again. Calm and at peace with bright hope for the future.
This made me reflect on what led me back to Oman.
Words brought me here again. Something so simple but so powerful.
My vocation as a publisher and writer has taken me to many beautiful places—and it has brought me back to a place I remembered so fondly from my past and to a feeling that often gets lost or buried in the hectic world we all live in.
I believe that words and stories are the most powerful force in the world. The words we read, the words we say and the words we hear can transport us to our past, can make our present a better place and gives us a sense of hope for our future.
A wise Omani man told me recently that in order to make our world better, “we must focus on and talk about humans… the people.” I agree with him. Not abstract ideas or perfect world scenarios, not government or political agendas. We must talk about the people.
Improving our life and our world is completely about how we act and interact with each other. It’s about humanity.
As humans, we are more alike than we are different. And it is common experience and interests that becomes a bond that establishes a better understanding of each other. With understanding comes better communication and better communication shortens the path to mutual respect. Something the world needs more of.
There is no better way to make a connection to our collective common experience than through stories. As a publisher and writer, my focus is to bring to life stories that contain powerful and positive messages presented to the reader within an entertaining story.
I am so very proud of Laila and her book. Its message of inclusivity and acceptance of all people and cultures is compelling and complements another fiction series we are working on called Serpentauria: Ark of Extinction, with its message about taking better care of our planet, its resources, animals and each other.
These two fiction series will have adventures that bring the main characters to Oman and through them I hope to spread to others what I feel here—peace and hope. I cannot think of a finer setting for the words to come to life for the reader.
Through our books and efforts we will promote a positive message and do our part to make our world better… one word at a time.
Thank you Laila for such a wonderful book and for being my friend. Through you and Mirabella I have the opportunity to be here today, in a very special place, with a very special people. I believe 32 years ago part of Oman stayed with me and coming back awoke it—and it feels wonderful.
Thank you all for coming to share this moment with us, for your hospitality and that of the Al Bustan Palace and most of all for the opportunity to come back to Oman and feel its beauty again in my heart. I know I will return and look forward to that day.